Partisan minds 1

Posted in history, politics by jrahman on January 2, 2015

They never liked us.  They, the susheels, the bhadralok, the elite.  They never liked us, the children of peasants.  We are, and have always been, the party of the peasants.  And they never liked us.  They thought we were too uncouth, uncultured for their precious schools and clubs and institutions.  Us, the chasha lot, that we could have a say in how things should be — this was anathema to them.  

Well, guess what?  We are Bangladesh.  We own Bangladesh.  We made Bangladesh.  Yes, they still hate it.  But they have to accept it, don’t they?  

And one man, Bangabandhu, made it happen.  Actually, scratch that.  Bangabandhu started the process.  But in many ways, Netri has surpassed him.  Might be controversial, but I am going to come out and say it — she truly is the greatest.

They, the caste Hindu zamindars and Urdu-speaking Nawabs, they couldn’t stand the idea of democracy, because democracy would mean the some Bangal would rise!  So they partitioned Bengal, and sabotaged Pakistan.  They cut down to size anyone who dared to stand tall.  Of course, there were exceptions.  Shaheed Sahib stood with us, sometimes.  And our leaders were naive too.  Sher-e-Bangla, Maolana Bhashani, they let their big hearts cloud their judgment.  After all, we have a long history of being oppressed, subjugated, and it takes time to learn the cruel art of realpolitik.

Time is something they never gave Bangabandhu.  They tried to break him.  Beat him.  Bribe him.  They failed.  Then they came close to him.  Befriended him.  Then they betrayed him.

Bangabandhu had the biggest heart of all.  That was his undoing.  They plotted against him right from the very first day.  They, and their spoilt children. 

Their children often rebelled against their fathers — remember Jabbar Khan and his sons?  These ultra-radicals misled Maolana to political oblivion.  They made life miserable for Bangabandhu.  They joined hands with the usurper Zia.  They claimed to be progressive, but they served the forces of reaction.

Ah, that usurper Zia.  That conniving conspirator.  He tried to be all things to everyone.  Well, history catches up with you.  It’s only a matter of time that the monument of lies in Sher-e-Bangla Nagar will be flattened.  

As for the forces of reaction — well, elites have always tried to play the religion card, tarnishing us as un-Islamic, agents of the Hindus.  The irony here is obvious when you look at the lifestyle of any of our grass root men and women.  And people of Bangladesh know it. Whether it was in the 1950s when they said ‘a vote for the boat and the bibi gets divorced’, or in 2013 when that liar Mahmudur Rahman was sprouting venom, people saw through it all.

It helped that at the helm was a strong-willed, strong-armed person such as our Netri.  Allah moves in mysterious ways.  They killed the whole family, but she survived.  And she has surpassed even Bangabandhu.  

She does not forget.  She knows who betrayed the Father of the Nation. She knows the conspirators.  She learnt over the years, from her own mistakes as well as the ones of her enemies.  

She has taken great personal risks, and survived assassination attempts.  Her patience and resolve have spared Bangladesh the bloodbath of the 1970s.  And yet, our susheels try to buttress the image of other politicians.  Well, the truth has a way of coming out, and now we know the full extent of the dishonesty and villainy of the usurper and his family.

Susheels conspired to rig successive elections, while our side was disunited.  But over the years, she has united the party.  She gives people a second chance.  Veteran leaders, reformed leftists, even repentant susheels, have accepted her leadership.  And the country has benefitted from their service.

She gives people a chance.  But only upto a point.  After that, she does not forgive.  She has allowed the confused left back to the party.  She welcomes the susheels, as long as they are not plotting to get back their lost glory.  But she is not naive like the great old men of the past.  She will hunt you down, even if you count American presidents as your pal.  The murderers of Ivy Rahman — just remember this, no hiding from the wrath of our Netri.

But you know what, we don’t really worry about the usurper, his family and their corrupt company.  That lot is under control.  The real enemy is still the unrepentant, unreconstructed susheels.  And they have a new agent — the Jamaatis.  

No, not the fan boys of that fraudster Sayedee.  The truth be told, a lot of our hearts also broke when we learnt the true face of that hated razakar.  And we will win over the confused brothers, inshallah.  

No, not that kind of Jamaatis we worry about.  We worry about the ones who attend BUET or learns law in London.  Their fathers used to play laal biplob in the 1970s.  We worry that they will try the green one now.

They have the money.  They have the brain.  Their tentacles are everywhere.  They have planted agents in the bureaucracy, in banking, in education, everywhere. 

We must remain ever vigilant against the Jamaatis and their patrons.  True democracy is only possible when these weeds have been eliminated.



(The second part, from the other side, will be posted later).











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  1. Pilton Miah said, on January 2, 2015 at 3:53 pm

    Um, even as a parody I found this to be quite poor. Not every criticism of either side from the other side has to become some sort of degenerative conversation between rehashed stereotypes. In fact, from what I’ve seen on forums, the new category of educated [or semi-educated] Bangladeshis are considerably better at this sort of dialogue than previously [probably because electronic media is so much more pervasive and penetrative, with a wide range of opinions and niche ideas flowing freely. Simply put, a lot more information is readily available. No I won’t get into a debate about what constitutes “good information”, except to say that skilled purveyors will always find it, where the incompetent won’t].

    I understand that it can feel as if partisanship of this kind is unique to Bangladesh, but it really isn’t. It afflicts even the world superpower ▬ the effects are different for a whole host of reasons.

    I personally feel you have done a disservice to your blog [which I otherwise enjoy] by posting this. You are giving voice to a set of stereotypes that we should be moving beyond. If you wrote about moving beyond these stereotypes, that would be OK [I recognize you have at least hinted at this, in the past].

    But I found this commentary rather crude and unhelpful.

    • logicat said, on January 4, 2015 at 2:46 pm

      wait … this was meant to be parody? to my ears, it sounds uncannily accurate. i’m afraid that this is exactly how vast swathes of the party rank and file, and not a few of its intellectuals and thought leaders, do think. which bits did you find unpersuasive or inauthentic, pm?

      i think much of it is inaccurate. for instance, the AL was always the party of the petit bourgeoisie and not of the peasantry (which is why it was so reviled on the left), but certainly today’s party rank and file do not make that distinction.

      in fact, if anything, it is a little too sophisticated. today’s loyalists do not have anything positive to say about bhashani, for instance, or indeed, anyone except BB. generous tips of the hat to the likes of HSS and sher-e-bangla are a thing of the past.

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